The Charlatans – 02 Academy, Glasgow, UK (4th December 2017)

The Charlatans make you forget nothing and remember everything. Glasgow was the city, Monday was the night and as the band burst onto stage, it was clear the crowd were in for a real treat.

For a group that has clocked up nearly three decades of music, they do not fail to surprise. From the opening new tune Not Forgotten, every instrument was clear and easy to differentiate. It could be argued that after long listens trying to get into the new album Different Days, the latest songs actually come alive on stage and are now modern-day Charlatans classics.

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With the Glaswegian crowd in full vocal throttle, pint glasses and arms in the air, you could tell the musicians were clearly enjoying the rip-roaring reception with Burgess dancing to the crowd, taking photos and beckoning to those high up on the balconies.

And the hits just kept coming. From the catchy Just When Your Thinking Things Over and old favourite Weirdo to the rip-roaring North Country Boy and upbeat Telling Stories, the atmosphere was electric and the band never sounded so good.

For die-hard Charlatans fans, there was a surprise in store in the form of a special rendition of Overising. And what a pure delight for the faithful crowd. An obscure choice to please the audience, the hit was released in 1991 and a joy to the ears. Although the song only appeared on the greatest hits complication Melting Pot and never on any studio album, you could tell it was a well-loved and well-played number in homes and indie discos, the length and breadth of the country. But the new songs including Plastic Machinery and Different Days brought a whole new dimension to their performance. In fact, old music meets new was the highlight of this gig. The tunes from the new offering were very well received and the old classics were stomping.

Could it be that the group have the best rhythm section in indie? One thing is for sure, Tim with his blond mop top and swagger will always be an enigmatic performer.
With a 25-year-old plus history, the show was as tight as ever and the perfect tonic to a school night and the start of the working week. Indeed, during the set, it was Tim who revealed: “Monday night is the new Saturday night.”

All in all, a tiptop, sparkling performance from a well-loved band – ultimately proving they’re still as relevant now as they were then.